US 7024826 B2
A barrier implement intended for obstructing a route of travel of crawling arthropods along a passageway comprises a sheet configured to circumscribe a passageway along which arthropods crawl. A dimension of the sheet is sized or molded relative to said passageway. An arthropod deterring component associated with said sheet for deterring said crawling arthropods and impeding their route of travel along said passageway.
In a method of impeding a route of travel of crawling arthropods from moving along a passageway from a location A to a location B, an arthropod deterring component is associated with a sheet. The sheet separates location A from location B and creates a vermin-impervious barrier therebetween. A route of travel of crawling arthropods from moving from location A to location B is impeded.
1. A barrier implement for obstructing a route of travel of crawling arthropods for a water irrigation head used in an outside watering device, comprising:
a flexible sheet of material adjacent to the water irrigation head, the sheet including an opening for allowing the water irrigation head to protrude therethrough; and
arthropod deterring component associated with said sheet for deterring crawling arthropods and impeding their route of travel to the water spray head;
a stake and hose assembly for supporting the sheet above a ground surface so that the sheet is located between a water irrigation head and the ground surface;
a threaded portion on the support member beneath the water irrigation head; and
a nut for screwing about the threaded portion, wherein the nut holds the sheet in position.
2. The barrier implement of
3. The barrier implement of
4. The barrier implement of
5. The method of
positioning the sheet between the water irrigation head and a ground surface.
6. The method of
supporting the sheet above the ground surface.
7. A method of deterring crawling arthropods from reaching a water irrigation head, comprising the steps of;
positioning a sheet adjacent to the water irrigation head, the positioning step including the step of holding the sheet to a support member with a nut on a threaded shaft, so that the sheet is between the water irrigation head and the support member;
applying an arthropod deterring component to the sheet; and
preventing the crawling arthropods from reaching the water irrigation head by the sheet with the arthropod deterring component.
8. The method of
protruding the water irrigation head through an opening in the sheet.
9. The method of
embodying an arthropod deterring agent to the sheet.
10. The method of
applying a pesticide to the sheet.
11. An arthropod deterring assembly for water irrigation heads, comprising in combination:
a water irrigation head raised above a ground surface;
a sheet between the head the ground surface; and
an arthropod deterring material associated with the sheet for deterring crawling arthropods from reaching the water irrigation head; and
a threaded shaft with nut for holding the sheet above the ground surface.
12. The assembly of
a gasket shape having a through-hole for allowing the water irrigation head to protrude therethrough.
13. The assembly of
This is a Divisional of application Ser. No. 09/750,831 filed Dec. 28, 2000 now U.S. Pat. No. 6,837,008.
This application claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/181,395, filed Feb. 9, 2000.
The present invention is directed to the art of pest control, and more particularly to the art of barriers for impeding route of travel of crawling arthropods at point source, point of entry. It serves as a novel technology in integrated pest management (IPM). The invention is particularly applicable to barriers for interrupting a route of travel of crawling arthropods along passageways that lead to partially enclosed or partially exposed spaces, and may be advantageously employed in these and other environments.
Ants and other crawling arthropods pose a problem to electrical or lighting wall work boxes, pipe flanges, fluid dispensing and intake passageways, enclosed utility boxes, heating, ventilating and air conditioning ports, and other enclosed or partially enclosed vias accessible to the pests. They are also undesirable in living areas, and are known to crawl up support structures to reach beds, table tops, racks and the like.
In agricultural areas where irrigation is used, ants tend to make their way into the tiny microjets that extend from the water feed line. The ants bring sand, dirt, food and other substances with them as they enter the jets. They also leave fecal matter. The fine microjets become clogged, and the flow of water therefrom becomes interrupted such that irrigation is interrupted. The jets must then be cleaned out or replaced on a frequent basis.
In another example, crawling insects that are inside walls or utility passageways often invade interior spaces, such as residential living areas or commercial rooms, by entering through utility wall plates. This is particularly the case in warmer climates or nesting areas in all climates. It is not uncommon for ants to enter into a room via the openings for receptacles and switching outlet components or electrical sockets. Also, if there is a gap between the wall and wall plate, the ants can foreseeably crawl through the gap into the room. They can also crawl into a room through openings defined by plates for cable wires, light switches, blank plates, and the like.
Pipe flanges and other articles that cover openings in walls provide another area where arthropods find access into a room or into a wall. The arthropods or ants crawl behind the flanges or plates, through pipe cracks or through pipe openings covered by flanges, or gaps between the wall and plumbing pipes.
Arthropods pose a serious problem for the microjets and other passageways, vias or enclosed or partially enclosed spaces attractive to such crawling insects. They clog passageways and spread diseases. They are considered a health hazard. Certain insects, such as red fire ants and Argentine ants, tend to sting humans, some to such a great extent to cause grave injury or even death. It is desirable to find a solution or an answer to these critical needs and to develop a way to prevent the arthropods from entering and clogging microjets and other vias. It is further desirable to develop a procedure for eliminating or dramatically reducing the passageway of the crawling arthropods into residential as well as non-residential spaces. Finally, it is desirable to develop an implement and method to obstruct a route of travel of crawling arthropods along an exposed, enclosed, or partially enclosed passageway.
The present invention provides for a novel barrier implement and method for obstructing a route of travel of crawling arthropods that is safe, economical, and durable and provides a solution to the critical needs in integrated pest management.
In accordance with the present invention, there is provided a barrier for separating ants and other crawling arthropods and vermin from a point or area where they are undesired. A method for impeding a route of travel of crawling arthropods is also provided.
A barrier implement intended for obstructing a route of travel of crawling arthropods along a passageway comprises a sheet material adapted to circumscribe the passageway along which arthropods crawl. A dimension of the sheet is sized relative to the passageway. An arthropod deterring component is associated with the sheet material to deter crawling arthropods and impede their route of travel along the passageway.
A method of impeding a route of travel of crawling arthropods from a location A to a location B along a passageway is also provided. A sheet is positioned between the two locations. An arthropod deterring component is associated with the sheet. The sheet circumscribes the passageway, and a dimension of the sheet is sized relative to said passageway. An arthropod impervious barrier is created between location A and location B to impede a route of travel of crawling arthropods from moving from location A to location B is impeded.
A principal advantage of the present invention is that the barrier implement can be retrofit to existing standard equipment. It provides an economical solution to a widespread insect problem.
Another advantage of the present invention is that it falls within the recent mandate to reduce the broadcasting of pesticide chemicals.
Another advantage of the present invention is that the barrier device serves a dual purpose. It deters a route of travel of crawling arthropods. It also reduces or eliminates the infiltration of air or drafts that flows through electrical boxes, wall plates, pipe flanges and the like.
Yet another advantage of the invention is found in its duration. The implement can be applied and kept in place for up to several years. After the barrier implement loses its effectiveness, a new barrier implement can be readily installed to replace the old.
Still other advantages and benefits of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon a reading and understanding of the following detailed description.
The invention may take physical form in certain parts and arrangements of parts, a preferred embodiment of which will be described in detail in this specification and illustrated in the accompanying drawings which form a part hereof.
Referring now to the drawings where the showings are made for the purpose of illustration only and are not for the purpose of limiting same, the Figures set forth examples of environments in which a barrier implement for impeding a route of travel of crawling arthropods is useful. The implement is useful in connection with blocking progression of arthropods crawling along passageways, whether the passageways be elongated or abbreviated in length, enclosed or exposed. The implement is designed to surround or circumscribe a given passageway such that it obstructs the crawling arthropod from proceeding between a location A and a location B along said passageway. These two locations generally comprise areas on either side of an installed barrier implement.
The barrier implement is comprised of any impregnable material or any material to which an arthropod deterring constituent could be superficially applied or impregnated. In a preferred embodiment, the sheet is comprised of a pliable polymer material into which an arthropod deterring component can be molded. But the material need not necessarily be pliable. The barrier implement can also be composed of a stiff or rigid material. The implement can be molded to be a circular, rectangular or any other shape disk, or it can be molded to virtually any configuration to fit or conform and adapt to any virtually surface orientation. For example, the disk can be shaped as a circle, square, angular, rectangular, as a wafer, a flap, gasket, washer, sheet, plate, shelf, leaf, thimble, coat, grommet, foil, membrane or virtually any configuration. It can be flat, concave, convex or embossed. It can be molded or extruded to fit any surface or embodiment to cause interruption of arthropod travel from point to point. Its purpose is to interrupt a route of crawling arthropod travel. It employs point source technology in that it stops or deters crawling arthropods at the source of the problem. It also responds to critical needs in integrated pest management.
An active ingredient in the nature of an arthropod deterring component is associated with the barrier material. The component can be molded directly in the barrier material, or it can be applied to the surface by painting it on or by inserting or installing a cartridge thereon. Preferably, the component is a pesticide such as permetherin which can be molded directly in the sheet. Another pesticide or other type of arthropod deterring constituent, which may or may not comprise a pesticide, is contained in, applied to or molded directly in the barrier material composition. In some instances, a slippery substance, such as polytetraflurorethylene (Teflon) coating or petroleum jelly applied to the barrier material, will suffice to deter the crawling arthropods from proceeding along the passageway. The barrier serves the purpose of acting as a shield or barrier to prevent the ingress of arthropods into ports or enclosed or semi-enclosed spaces where pests are not desired, or even past certain points on flat or elongated structures.
An example of an environment where the barrier implement is useful is provided in
The removable nature of the microjet assembly enables the installation of a barrier implement 36. The barrier itself comprises a disk shaped sheet that is fashioned to enable an elongated or other type object pass therethrough. Here, the sheet is provided in a circular configuration, though virtually any configuration will suffice. The thickness of the sheet should be such that it can be accommodated in the environment. The sheet disclosed in
An opening 40 defined in the sheet is adapted to circumscribe an elongated or other structure therethrough. Here, the opening is sized to accommodate the capillary tube 18. The barrier disk is held in place on the tube by passing threads from the microjet assembly through it and securing it in place by joining the assembly to the capillary and holding it in palace by the pressure of the hex nut.
An arthropod deterring component is associated with the disk. The disk and arthropod deterring component together act as a barrier and a deterrent to prevent the crawling arthropods from passing through to the tiny microjet openings. As the arthropods crawl upward along the support member or the tube, they approach the disk. The arthropod deterring component associated with the disk deters them from continuing along their path.
Ants and other crawling arthropods are prevented or deterred from entering the microjets by placing a disk 36 that embodies an arthropod deterring agent around the threads of the microjet, just below the opening 28. The disk extends to overhang the width of the capillary and is shown to rest on the top 24 of the stake 22. Ants that would have to crawl up the stake or flex tube to reach the microjet opening or port 28 are deterred by the arthropod deterring agent embodied in the disk. They must encounter the disk before they can proceed to the opening.
Another example of an environment in which the vermin deterring component can be used is shown in
Barrier implement shown in
Arthropods can also escape into a room through any gaps that are formed between a wall plate and a wall. The barrier implement is designed to prevent the escape of ants or other arthropods through such gaps.
The sheet itself is configured to correspond to the size and shape of the wall plate. Generally, two opposing sides of the wall plate sheet are substantially equal in size. The sheet can be configured to agree to the shape and purpose of the wall plate. For example, the wall plate shown in
A similar situation is identified in
The barrier implement can be configured to virtually any shape or size. Another example of a useful barrier is shown in
Barrier implements can be configured to correspond to other types of flanges including those from conduit, cable, dryer units and the like.
The barrier of
Another useful environment for the barrier implement is shown in
This invention is not limited to the sheets disk shown in the Figures. Nor is it limited to the microjet, the wall plates, the flanges, or the furniture/caster environments shown in the figures. The situation shown in the figures is merely by way of example. The device of the present invention is fully adaptable to virtually any enclosed or partially enclosed area where it is desirable to eliminate ants, roaches and other crawling arthropods by stopping their route of travel from point to point. Examples of where the barrier device of the present invention can be used include irrigation systems, electrical systems, heating and air conditioning systems, agricultural equipment, table or cart on legs, adjacent casters (indoors or outdoors), or any other situation where crawling pests pose a problem. The list is non-inclusive and is intended to include adaptability of the device to virtually any environment in any configuration to aid in the stopping of travel of arthropods from point to point.
The barrier can likewise be used with virtually any fluid dispensing or intake apparatus, any conduit, any enclosed or semi enclosed area where arthropods are not desired. Examples include, but are not limited to, use in utility boxes, junction boxes, at the end of hoses, electrical conduits inside tubes, outside tubes, at HVAC ports, or virtually anywhere that arthropods may crawl. The barrier device can be of virtually any configuration, and is molded to conform to the shape of the object to which it will be attached. It acts as a barrier, an exclusion device, a destruction device, blockade, impediment, or partition. It stops, kills or inhibits the route of travel from point to point of crawling arthropods. The device shields an enclosed or partially enclosed space from the crawling vermin. The vermin are prevented from crawling along the passageway from location A, which is defined as their source or the portion of passageway that leads from the source, to location B, which is defined as the area where arthropods are undesired or a portion of passageway which leads to that area.
The barrier is readily removable and can be replaced with another if the arthropod deterring constituent or active ingredient should become ineffective or depleted. In the alternative, it can have a protective cover or shield to protect against dermal contact.
The invention has been described with reference to the preferred embodiment. Obviously modifications and alterations will occur to others upon a reading and understanding of this specification. It is intended to include all such modifications and alterations insofar as they come within the scope of the appended claims or the equivalent thereof.